"Some days are sulky, some days have a grin "

the comments on ron silliman’s blog concerning poet en sf have been eating away at me for the last few days.

lets start with my thoughts on the actual review– while it did show some good insight and in the end it endorsed the book, i felt that i had to read through way too much of silliman’s past dealings with the city of san francisco to reach those insights. in fact, if i had just stopped at the blurb that bella put on her blog i would have been just fine. but no. my silly internet stalking ass just had to peek at the comments section cuz i was hoping for some type of intellectual discourse regarding poetics in general, and poeta en sf in particular.

instead i have to read some of the most offensive shit i have ever seen attempt to pass itself off as poetic dialogue. am i pissed? hell yeah. but then here we go back to this male power dynamic where my initial response is to stand in front of someone and offer them the chance to test my resolve.

now, do i have to be the big bad bully for poeta en sf? no, barb can do that quite well on her own. she is as bad ass as anyone i know and can stand next to me in a fight anyday but do i want to come in and act like the raging.pissed.husband? nope. internet flame wars have never been my style. its just like yelling from a moving car. very brave in the eyes of the yeller but little more than piss in the wind.

ive only had a few comments on this blog that would be considered disrespectful and that would be a real stretch to call em that but the shit goin down on sillimans blog is way past disrespectful, its in the “ah no… thats a fight on my block” territory. and again, i have no desire to go in and engage any of these people in the stomping ground of someones blog comment section. if they were in front of me, i would love to attempt (keyword) to speak to them on their initial concerns regarding the poem (one singular selection of poeta as opposed to the entire book length poem) and any other poetic concerns. i would not, under any circumstances, try to discourse on the racial issues they have embedded in their DNA cuz that shit is just a waste of time.
lets agree- that we cant disagree.
i grew up where i grew up looking like a look (this LOOK, by the way, is no response to any imagined trend in americana, its how i was fuckin born) and you grew up where you grew up looking like you look. i aint tryin to jump on some reality show tip and have us switch roles or sum shit like dat.

again, if you are keeping score at home, i am completely fcuckin biased here. but, i can still talk poetics if ya like. they may not have years of blog commentary experience behind them but i still have a damn good poetic ear and can go with anyone at anytime when it comes to this particular subject.

and there it is. i am waiting with bated breath for someone to have serious issues with the poetics behind poeta en sf. as of yet, this opinion has not raised itself in any public internet forum that i am aware of. and why am i waiting so anxiously for this “negative” review.
so i can get all king kong and pound my chest on this reviewers web site? no
its so that i can view barbs work from a fresh angle and when i look at her newer poems i can approach them from a new angle and with valid poetic concerns.

and thats it y’all. in case any of you are interested, the link to the review and the comments (which includes sexist garbage, the typical racist bs and some folks actually trying to discuss the poetic measure of the book -gasp!-) can be found here

currently, its pretty late but thats cuz i have spent most of the night setting up a friend website. my first full design, thank you very much. and i have also been putting together a tribute site for a poet who recently passed away. more soon on both but i just wanted to drop that in cuz i refuse to let some phantom fuckers whose opinions exist solely on someone elses popup box keep me from doing what i do best which is being a good friend, an ever evolving poet and a supportive, loving husband.

Some days you hear a voice
Taking you to another place
Some days are better than others

amen to that y’all. amen and hallelujah…

Join the Conversation


  1. i thought this was right on, the way the poetry world should be run.

    and i had the same feeling about not stepping into the mire of that comments box; i applaud eileen, jean, nick, and others for their defense of the work, but i have been there before and it’s like talking to a blank (white) wall, albeit a condescending one that barks at you from the head of the table. “i would not, under any circumstances, try to discourse on the racial issues they have embedded in their DNA cuz that shit is just a waste of time.” i feel that.

  2. i’m going to be ill for the rest of the day, now.
    anyway, all the people who were assholes about barbara jane told on themselves and revealed how little it had to do with her poetry and how much it had to do with thier own pathological terrified fucked-upedness within about 2 seconds. so you don’t really have to be the knight-in-shining armor for her. but i can see wanting to crack some skulls just because the world is dumb.

Leave a comment

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.